3 cups of peach jelly in the sun on a wooden counter

Food & Tea Pairing, Part 1: Peach Jelly

Konnichiwa! This is Yena, intern #150, from Toronto, Canada.  As a lover of good food and good tea, I’ve always been interested in finding the perfect pairing of the two. When asked to think of a personal project to pursue during my three months at Obubu, I knew immediately that I wanted to explore tea pairing.

Typically, Japanese teas are paired with Japanese traditional sweets: wagashi. While wagashi are very delicious, they are difficult to find outside of Japan, and even more difficult to make at home. For my project, I wanted to develop simple recipes using ingredients that are easy to find outside of Japan. This blog post series documents this process.

A quick shoutout to my senpai, Jack, the staff, and my co-interns and kouhais for helping me with this project! Thank you for all your feedback, and for participating in the tasting sessions! And a special shoutout to my super-kouhai, Maren, who helped publish this series on the blog and on IG! Miss you all very much!

Part 1: Peach Jelly

For my first dessert, I chose peach jelly, thinking that it will be a quick, simple project. Oh, how wrong I was. This ended up being the last recipe to finish, and I was making batches until the second last week of my internship. The biggest challenge was getting the right texture/consistency. I made many batches using different amounts of gelatin powder, trying to find the perfect ratio. It was a long, arduous process, but the result was well worth it, and I can’t wait to share the recipe with you!

Three tupperwares of peach jelly
Round 1 tasting. I started with three types of jelly: peach puree jelly, peach juice jelly with chunks of peach, and mint jelly.

Some lessons I learned while working with gelatin powder:

  • When working with gelatin, you need to be precise. Using a scale is imperative.
  • It’s best to work in percentage: the amount of gelatin powder equals 6% of the amount of liquid.
  • Mix the powder once the liquid cools down to ~ 60℃.
  • When mixing the gelatin powder with the liquid, dissolve the powder in a small bowl with a small amount of the liquid, then add the mixture to the main batch. Work quickly to avoid gelatin chunks.
Peach jelly on a tea leaf coaster in front of a window on stormy Wazuka
Batch #5. It looks good, but the texture was way off.

Pairing Suggestions

This recipe requires reducing the juice in a saucepan. The result is a sweet, concentrated peach flavour, which pairs well with umami-forward teas. Try this jelly with Sencha of the Spring Sun, or Sencha of the Gushing Brook, brewed at a low temperature (50℃-60℃) to really bring out the umami. Heavenly Drop Gyokuro and Kabuse Sencha would also pair nicely with the jelly.

Now onto the recipe!

Peach Jelly

Reducing the juice results in a concentrated, peachy-sweet flavour without having to add more sugar. I also added nata de coco, coconut gel made from fermented coconut water, for added texture (thank you, George, for the idea!). If you can’t find nata de coco, it can easily be substituted with fruit chunks.

3 cups of peach jelly in the sun on a wooden counter


250mL Peach Blend juice (any peach flavoured juice would work)

1 pack of Nata de Coco

6g Gelatin


  1. Heat the juice in a pan at medium heat, reduce the heat once it comes to a boil. Simmer on low heat, reducing the juice by 1/5, or until you have 200mL of juice. Turn off the heat and let it cool.
  2. Place nata de coco in a mould of your choice.
  3. When the juice has cooled to ~60℃, take a small bowl and mix the gelatin powder with some of the juice. Once the gelatin powder has fully dissolved, mix it in with the rest of the juice.
  4. Pour the liquid into the moulds. Let it cool to room temperature before placing them in the fridge. The jelly should be set after 6-8 hours in the fridge.
  5. Enjoy with some Obubu tea!
Posted in Interns, Tea Recipes.

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